Breath, It’s all about breath! RRP 12-4-17

Check out the Renegade Rowing Training Plan for this week below.  It’s going to be a solid week, so be sure to hydrate and sleep well.  Have your meals and pre/post workout snacks ready to go!  You will need them!

 

Weekly Training Plan:

RRP 12-4-17

Weekly Challenge:

Spend 5min working on Breathing Practice (4-count box breathing) in different configurations.

RR Social WOD:

Hike Harvard Stadium @6am on Thursday 

Monday’s Rowing WOD will be a good burner to  get your lungs going and allow you to really focus on a solid core.  The double unders and kettle bell snatches are technical and require a higher focus on skill and efficiency.  For the double unders try to keep your wrists loose and get into a good flow that you can maintain.  A good goal would be to go unbroken for a minute.  With the one arm kettle bell snatch focus on driving through the heels and getting good hip extension to move the weight.  A bonus for the KB Snatch is that it requires you to keep a stable core and not allow your torso to rotate.  Any movement that involves an anti rotation component and stabilizing of the core is good for rowing.  Every time we reach out to the rigger in sweep rowing there is both a compression and rotation on our spines, which can lead to disc injuries over time.  By strengthening the core and resisting rotation we can prevent those injuries from happening. So keep that chest up and don’t let the shoulder drop too much through the bottom!  Here is a good link from Rogue Fitness on the Kettle Bell Snatch: http://youtu.be/6l2Iu26oWW8

Post your total score and thoughts to comments!

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The Holiday’s are here! Fire it Up! – RRP 11-27-17

I hope everyone had a great Thanksgiving and got a chance to enjoy time with family and friends.  We did the YMCA Pie Run in Middletown and braved the cold to earn our Turkey and Mashed Potatoes!  Here is the training plan for this week.  Let’s kick off December on a strong note and bring it home for the New Year.  Let us know if you have any questions or would like to join the Renegade Rowing Project in fighting for your goals!

Weekly Training Plan:

RRP 11-27-17

Get after the Stadium!

Weekly Challenge:

Spend 3min in the bottom of a squat each day … tell us how it goes!

RR Social WOD:

Hike Harvard Stadium @6am on Tuesday 

(Let us know if you’re going so we can keep an eye out for you!)

 

One thing that all good athletes have in common is a sense of efficiency.  The athlete that can maintain proper mechanics and spend the least amount of energy to complete a task will be able to push harder and farther compared to the athlete that just flies and dies.  This weeks’ Rowing WODs introduce a key concept to being efficient in rowing and may improve your efficiency in longer wods.

Checkout the focus for Monday’s RWOD… Start the workout by rowing 1,000m at 28 strokes per minute and holding a 2k+5 split.  This will get you warm and ready to go to work.  During the 4min rest fit in 20 push ups however you want. Then, set the monitor for 3′ of work and 1′ of rest.  Each 3-minute piece is broken into 1-minute sections that should be rowed at the designated stroke rating holding a 2k+7 split.

In order to hold the goal split while decreasing the stroke rating you must perform a ratio shift.  A ratio shift changes the timing of the stroke on the drive and the recovery.  For example, shifting from 1 on the drive: 2 on the recovery, to 1 on the drive: 3 on the recovery.  This is a challenging workout.  Use it to develop a sense of efficiency.  A proper ratio shift maintains the power per stroke but allows the rower time to breath and prepare for the next stroke a little bit more.

Post your results for this weeks workouts and your Experience with ratio shifts.

Below are some pictures of Mike T. after working on staying connected through the finish.  What does your finish look like? Is it efficient?  How fast do your hands move through the finish?  … Just a few things to think about as we continue to work on suspension through the stroke and balanced finishes.

The Renegade Rowing Project – Back at it!

The Renegade Rowing Project

Back at it w/ Coach Pat

It’s been a couple of years since you’ve regularly heard from me on the blog.  I’ve been busy sharing the sport of rowing with the world at Community Rowing Inc.  While I will still be forging ahead as a Rowing Ambassador at CRI, I wanted to get myself and others motivated to keep training and improving.  That’s where the Renegade Rowing Project comes in.  I will be doing my best to post every Sunday night with a new plan for the week and a weekly challenge.  If you’d like to join the Renegade Rowing Project all you have to do is jump on in and join the fun.  Be sure to post your results and experience to comments or share them on social media.  We’ll be doing the same using @RenegadeRowing and the tags #RenegadeRowingProject #RowStrong.  I look forward to getting after it with you!

Weekly Challenge:

Spend 2min in the bottom of a squat each day … tell us how it goes!

Weekly Training Plan:

RRP 11-13-17

Renegade Rowing Training Plan Template

Why Row?

Rowing is the utmost definition of Sport in modern society. Merriam-Webster and Dictionary.com give two definitions of sport. One, Sport is an athletic activity requiring skill or physical prowess and often of a competitive nature. Two, Sport is a source of diversion and recreation engaged in for pleasure. Whether you’re a middle school rower just learning to scull or an Olympic hopeful trying out for the national team, Rowing provides challenge, competition, and fun.

Rowing trumps all because it offers the best of sport. It tests our skill and athleticism as individuals and as part of a team. Rowing requires an unwavering calm and trust that pushing yourself to wit’s end without seeing where you’re going will develop personal satisfaction and boat speed. It takes balance, grace, and power. Rowing is saying goodbye to the chaos of life by shoving off the dock and taking time for yourself and your team to focus on a common goal.

A Quick Note

Our plan will be combining the best of many worlds, rowing, fitness, strength, nutrition, mobility, flexibility, and recovery. The goal of this post is to outline all the tools available in our plan. This post will introduce certain principles and ideas that will be important to know when following our plan. If it’s not possible to include all of the details for a certain part of our plan here, then those details will be covered in separate posts. If you only read this post you should have a strong idea of how our plan will run. Just know that everything we do has a purpose and your coaches are happy to explain any part of the plan you may be curious about.

Where Do We Go From Here?

As you can tell our plan is different. It challenges the standard long slow distance model of training by combining more high intensity interval training through strength and conditioning and rowing. The best way to get a handle on our plan is to see it in action. The following attachments outline the Renegade Rowing Training Plan Template and give examples for the work we will be doing day in and day out. The best advice we can give you is to keep an open mind, be ready to learn and work hard, and be ready to be part of something. Take a look at the charts, calculations, and diagrams, but most of all get in the gym, get in the boat, and give it everything you’ve got. This is our plan and we’ll know best how to improve and progress toward our goals by the work we do together. We take pride in being different. We are specialized generalists who are experts in both fitness and rowing. Our plan develops firsthand athletes that know how to compete, work hard, and row fast based on personal experience. We will be strong and row fast for life.

If you’re curious or have questions about anything please ask!

 

Be a Self Coach: Rowing Warm-Up with the Concept2 Power Curve

Using the Concept2 Performance Monitor to gain rowing feedback and coach yourself is a great use of warm up time before jumping into class.  This article will give you the ideal power curve, common faults you might see, and a couple of challenges to try in a 5 minute warmup pre-class or training session.  Here’s a quick video on the power curve to get things started.  Check it out and then read through the rest of the article for tips and challenges to try.

1. The Ideal Power Curve

Ideal Power CurveSet the monitor to display the power curve (or force curve) during your next warmup to really dial in body awareness and technique.  The ideal curve is a smooth inverted parabola with the peak located in the center of the curve.  If you can make this happen then your technique has a nice smooth transition of force being applied to the handle from the legs, hips, and arms.  Everything from your head to your toes is working together in a nice smooth sequence that results in an efficient application of power.

2. Common Faults

Self Coach Power CurveIf you ever see a double peak or a curve that looks like the profile of the Green Mountains in Vermont there is something missing or room for improvement in your technique.  The power curve represents your rowing technique graphically and that is why it can be used to self coach.  If you were to divide the graph into three sections along the horizontal, the curve at each of those sections would represent how you’re legs, body, and arms are being used to produce force.  If the valley of a double peak curve is in the middle, then you know there is something lacking or missing from how your body/hips are being used through the middle of the drive.  Try to focus on making the curve smoother, eliminating chatter/inefficiency, while emphasizing the swing of your body through the middle.  Can you keep the force/pressure on the handle constant through the middle of the stroke?

3. 5 Minute Warm-Up Challenge

Set the monitor to display the power curve (or force curve) during your next warmup and try the following challenges during each consecutive minute.  Can you create an ideal power curve during each stroke no matter what the challenge?  See the video above for what this warm-up  should look like.

  1. 1min – Legs Only Rowing (Consistent Body Angle/Arms Straight)
  2. 1min – Legs and Body Rowing (Arms Straight)
  3. 1min – Full Strokes @20 strokes/minute
  4. 1min – Full Strokes @24 strokes/minute
  5. 1min – Full Strokes @28 strokes/minute

Watch your power curve on the monitor during every stroke of the 5 minute warm-up.  Is it a smooth inverted parabola?  Where’s the peak?  Is there a double peak that you need to eliminate?  Is there chatter you can eliminate?  Be in control of your stroke at all times and maintain good posture.  If you find something that seems jerky or out of control try to change it and make it different.  Experiment a little and have some fun!  Power Power CurveIf you’re looking for an added challenge, as the stroke rating increases to 24 strokes/minute and then 28 strokes/minute, try to move the peak of the curve to the left and get the curve to start higher up the vertical axis with a very steep slope.  This will mean you’re very connected and getting good initiation with the legs.  The challenge then becomes can you keep the curve smooth and chatter free!

If you’re interested in learning more or getting out on the water, email patrick.larcom@communityrowing.org!

Don’t Row Bad! 3 ways to look hotter and last longer in …

Row Better, Be Awesome!Who doesn’t want to look hotter and last longer in all that they do?  If your rowing is bad and you think rowing sucks, you have an opportunity to live a stronger, fitter, and more vital life.  Don’t Row Bad.

Instead of telling you all the awesome reasons to row, this post will try to give you the pitfalls of rowing in hopes that you can avoid them, make rowing suck less, and have more fun with one of the fastest growing sports in the country.

When rowing pops up in the open, in next months programming, or at your next competition, follow these three tips to not Row Bad.

Don't: Have Bad Posture

Don’t: Have Bad Posture

#1 – Everyone Wants to Be Taller …

Posture is the key to vitality and the number one thing you will probably lose when you first start to row.  Let’s face it, it’s hard to sit all day in an office or in a car and then be expected to sit tall and row strong in the gym.  However, if you can focus on one thing that will make you more attractive, more efficient, and more productive it would be holding better posture.  Before picking apart any other part of your rowing stroke, take 5 minutes to focus on posture.

Be Taller: Have Good Posture

Be Taller: Have Good Posture

Try This: Row for 5 minutes and pause every 5 strokes to check your posture.  Can you enter and exit the pause with perfect posture?  Can you hold good posture all the way through the next 5 strokes?  Imagine your significant other or future significant other is about to walk into the room, how tall do you want to be when they see you for the first time?

#2 – Use the Bigger Guns …

Don't: Use the Arms before the Legs

Don’t: Use the Arms before the Legs

Most of us like to show off our guns at the beach, but they tend to get in the way when we row.  Our Bigger Guns, the legs, can create more power and move the boat further per stroke if initiated first.  Our legs have bigger muscles and more muscle fibers to use than our arms.  They are better suited for the heavier part of the stroke, the front end.  When the fan is moving the slowest at the front end of the stroke, focus on pushing with the legs rather than pulling with the arms.  Remember, at the front end of the stroke, when the arms bend, the power ends.  Do more! Use the Bigger Guns first!

At the Front End: Push Legs First

At the Front End: Push Legs First

Try This: Start at the front end and take 3 strokes using the legs only, then take 3 full strokes.  Repeat this sequence for 3 minutes.  Can you push the legs down without changing your body angle or breaking your elbows in the first 3 legs only strokes?  Can you blend the leg drive into the 3 full strokes without being robotic or breaking the elbows early?

#3 – Get Over Yourself and Don’t Fall Off …

Don't: Fall off your sit bones or pull w/ toes on the foot straps

Don’t: Fall off your sit bones or pull w/ toes on the foot straps

No one likes a big-headed know it all with an ego.  No one wants to fall of their seat.  Good things to remember when you finish the stroke.  If you were to let go of the handle at the end of the stroke would you fall backward off the seat?  If so you probably aren’t sitting in a good position.  Stay on top of your sit bones when you finish the stroke, don’t fall off them!  Also, if you don’t get over your seat/hips/sit bones before sliding forward you will end up doing more work than necessary and wasting energy.  Finish the stroke, sit tall, get your shoulders stacked over your hips, then relax and enjoy sliding forward.  Don’t pull yourself forward with your toes/foot straps.  Relax your legs!

Sit Tall, Be On Sit Bones, Keep Bottom of Foot Connected to Footboard

Sit Tall, Be On Sit Bones, Keep Bottom of Foot Connected to Footboard

Try This: Row with your feet on top of the foot straps for 5 minutes. Can you keep your feet connected to the footboards through the finish?  Can you stay on your sit bones and get over your seat before letting it slide forward?  How smooth can you be?  Show everyone you know what you’re doing, but be smooth.  No need for an ego.

If you practice these three tips one at a time over the next week as part of your warm up, you will look hotter and last longer in anything you set your mind to, especially rowing.

For even more pro tips and ways to increase vitality through rowing, sign your gym’s rowing team up for the Charles River Rowing League 2016.

If you don’t have a team let me know and I’ll help you set one up!